eristic

adjective
eris·​tic | \ i-ˈri-stik How to pronounce eristic (audio) , e- \
variants: or less commonly eristical \ i-​ˈri-​sti-​kəl How to pronounce eristic (audio) \

Definition of eristic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: characterized by disputatious and often subtle and specious reasoning

eristic

noun

Definition of eristic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a person devoted to logical disputation
2 : the art or practice of disputation and polemics

Other Words from eristic

Adjective

eristically \ i-​ˈri-​sti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce eristic (audio) \ adverb

Did you know?

Adjective

Eristic means "argumentative as well as logically invalid." Someone prone to eristic arguments probably causes a fair amount of strife amongst his or her conversational partners. It's no surprise, then, that the word traces its ancestry back to the Greek word for "strife." Eristic and the variant eristical come from the Greek word eristikos, meaning "fond of wrangling," from erizein, "to wrangle," and ultimately from eris, which means "strife." The adjective appeared in print in English in 1637. It was followed approximately 20 years later by the noun eristic, which refers to either a person who is skilled at debates based on formal logic or to the art or practice of argument.

First Known Use of eristic

Adjective

1637, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1659, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for eristic

Adjective

Greek eristikos fond of wrangling, from erizein to wrangle, from eris strife

Learn More About eristic

Time Traveler for eristic

Time Traveler

The first known use of eristic was in 1637

See more words from the same year

Listen to Our Podcast About eristic

Dictionary Entries Near eristic

Eristalis

eristic

Erithacus

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for eristic

Cite this Entry

“Eristic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/eristic. Accessed 30 Jun. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on eristic

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for eristic

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about eristic

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!